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Spaghetti With Anchovies, Cherry Tomatoes and Breadcrumbs

Spaghetti with anchovies, cherry tomatoes and breadcrumbs is one easy and delicious dish. I know anchovies have a bad reputation but what you need to know is how much flavour these fillets can add to a dish without making it too “fishy”. This recipe is a great introduction to the anchovy. They melt right into the sauce and you may not even notice that they’re in there. But, what you end up with is an umami flavoured tomato sauce that is delicious and has a nice depth of flavour. Topped with pangrattato, which is seasoned breadcrumbs, and you just added more flavour and texture to an already stand out dish. Simple is always best!


Recipe by Mark Calaminici | Food Loves Company

Serves 4


For the Pangrattato

3 tbsp.

1 stale ciabatta bun (any bread), panko or regular breadcrumbs. 1 cup or more.

Salt, to taste

Freshly cracked pepper, to taste

Zest of one lemon

For the sauce

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

2 tbsp. unsalted butter

½ sweet onion, finely chopped

2 -3 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced or chopped

5 anchovy fillets, packed in oil, drained, finely chopped. You can add more if you like

250g cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered

Salt, to taste

Freshly cracked pepper, to taste

Chili flakes, to taste

5-6 fresh basil leaves, torn

1 lb spaghetti


1. In a large frying pan, heat 3 tbsp. of oil. Add breadcrumbs and season with salt and freshly cracked pepper. Cook breadcrumbs, until light and golden brown, stirring often. Add lemon zest just before taking breadcrumbs out and mix to incorporate. Place in a bowl and set aside.

2. In a large frying pan over medium heat, heat extra virgin olive oil. Add sweet onion, garlic, anchovies, chili flakes, cherry tomatoes and season with salt and freshly cracked pepper. Saute until tomatoes are tender and start to blister.

3. Cook the spaghetti in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente, according to package instructions. Reserve some pasta water.

4. Add cooked spaghetti and a little bit of the pasta water. Toss to incorporate all ingredients and to form your sauce, adding more pasta water if needed. Add fresh basil, and a small handful of breadcrumbs. Toss to incorporate and then plate and garnish with more breadcrumbs. Enjoy.

Until next time, ciao!


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